Andrew Billings likes his spot in Bears’ defense

The free agent defensive tackle is looking forward to playing the same 1-technique position he played with the Bengals when he entered the NFL as a fourthj-round draft pick in 2016. “I’ll jump right back into it, no problem,” he said.

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Denver Broncos v Las Vegas Raiders

New Bears defensive tackle Andrew Billings (97, hitting Broncos quarterback Russell Wilson in Week 4) started 14 games for the Raiders last season.

Photo by Jeff Bottari/Getty Images

New Bears defensive tackle Andrew Billings likes Matt Eberflus’ defense because it takes him back to his NFL roots.

“One thing I do notice is that they’re playing a 1-technique [defensive tackle] with a cock nose and that’s how I was introduced to the NFL when I played four years with the Bengals,” said Billings, a fourth-round draft pick of the Bengals out of Baylor in 2016. “So it’s something I know I can do and I see myself fitting in pretty well.”

The Bears signed the 6-1, 311-pound Billings to a one-year, $3.5 million contract ($2.4 million guaranteed) to fortify their 31st-ranked run defense. Billings is a run-stuffing tackle who has started 51 games in five NFL seasons, including 14 games with the Raiders last season.

Billings played three seasons with the Bengals after missing his rookie year with a knee injury he suffered in training camp. He signed with the Browns in 2020, but opted out of the COVID season. He played only six games for the Browns in 2021 and was waived. He signed with the Raiders last offseason.

He likes the fit with the Bears, but also was looking for a job.

“Just the coaching style and the play style,” he said when asked what attracted him to the Bears. “And, honestly, once they made an offer, I was there.”

Billings said he played mostly a 2-I technique with the Raiders. But wouldn’t say he’s in a comfort zone in the Bears’ defense.

“No. I’d just say I’m used to it,” Billings said. “I’m comfortable at the shade. The 1-technique is what I started to do as a rookie. I’ll jump right back into it, no problem.”

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